The concept of child custody was abolished in Florida in October of 2008. The concepts of Custody, Primary Residential Care and Secondary Residential Care have been replaced with the concept of Parenting Plans and Time-Sharing.
The Parenting Plan is a document that governs the way the parties relate to one another about the decisions made regarding children, and includes a time-sharing schedule that dictates when the children will be spending time with each parent, including overnights, weekends and holidays and summer breaks. Also included is how often and the method of technologies that the parents will use to communicate with the children. If a Parenting Plan can be developed and agreed to by the parents then it only needs the approval of the Court to become binding. However, if the parents cannot agree, the schedule will be established by the Court’s determination.
Parenting Plans are some of the most challenging and difficult aspects of a divorce case. The parents must work through or litigate who the children will live with most of the time; and it can be a terrifying, frustrating and demanding process.
Shared parental responsibility is the legal presumption in Florida. The Court feels that both parents should be actively involved in their children's lives, education, religious upbringing, health and welfare. The Court will grant shared parental responsibility unless one parent is truly unfit. Otherwise, both parents will work together jointly raising their children.
The best interest of the minor child is the bottom line standard that the Courts consider in making parenting plan determinations. The Judge has wide leeway in making a decision as to what is in the best interest of the minor child(ren). Many parents get caught up in their own wants and needs or their perceived "rights", and forget that the Court only is concerned with what is in the best interest of their children.
I have endured such a custody fight. I understand what you are going through, what you are feeling, and what you want for you and your children. I have had the opportunity to see the way judges make these decisions and that experience gives me the ability to emphasis the important facts, evidence and testimony to give you the best possible chance to prevail in such a legal battle.
If you have additional questions about parenting plans, please contact our office at 561-819-6208 to schedule an initial consultation or go to our contact page.
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